Steps Ahead

(Copyright © 2006 Piero Scaruffi | Terms of use )
Krentz Ratings:
Step by Step (1980), 7/10
Paradox (1982), 7/10
Steps Ahead (1983), 7/10
Modern Times (1984), 7/10
Magnetic (1986), 6/10
Yin-Yang (1992), 5.5/10
Vibe (1995), 5.5/10
Swept Away (2010), 5.5/10

Steps Ahead was formed by vibraphonist Mike Mainieri as a vehicle to bring together some white New York virtuosi in a fusion group. The line-up on Step By Step (december 1980) included tenor saxophonist Michael Brecker, pianist Don Grolnick, bassist Eddie Gomez and drummer Steve Gadd. The supergroup continued to supply technical mastery but little emotion on Paradox (september 1981), with Peter Erskine replacing Gadd, and Steps Ahead (1983), with Eliane Elias replacing Grolnick (who nonetheless contributed the best track, Pools), before going electronic with Modern Times (february 1984), thanks to new keyboardist Warren Bernhardt.

Recent recordings include: Magnetic (1986), adding a battery of electronic keyboards and guitars; Yin-yang (1992), with Brecker replaced by Bendik, Rachel Z on keyboards and a new rhythm section; Vibe (1995), with yet another line-up.

Veteran bassist Marc Johnson, Steps Ahead's pianist Eliane Elias, Joe Lovano on sax and Joey Baron on drums, recorded Swept Away (feb 2010), devoted to Eliane Elias' compositions.

Steps Ahead's keyboardist Warren Bernhardt died in 2022.

(Copyright © 2006 Piero Scaruffi | Terms of use )
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